October 2012Volume 1, Issue 10
unProfessional Standards DepartmentWest Yorkshire Police
Police Authority top men in sustained corruption cover-upWith the onset of the campaigning for the new Police and Crime Commssioner we turn our attention to two key figures: Police Authority Chair Mark Burns-Williamson and Chief Executive Fraser Sampson. We put the question: Are either of them fit to hold public office?UpSD have covered a significant number of cases of appalling incompetence, misconduct and downright criminality in Mark Burns-Williamson the past nine issues. Overlaid on this Resigning from WYPA there is the spectre of racism and bullying next month prevalent within the Force. So what has the Police Authoritys response been to such as the public trashing of the integrity and reputation of a Deputy Chief Constable? Simple. Dont call for the evidence and pretend it never happened: Business as usual, in effect. The response to a very public exposure of a badly cultured, poorly managed, rotten to the core Professional Standards Department? Denigrate the person exposing the corruption and use bully boy tactics to try and scare him and his colleagues away. Do WYPA force the Chief Constable to tackle the corruption at its root on the pain of dismissal? No way. Collude with the IPCC Commissioner to cover up the issues most damaging to police reputation? Yes, please. The handling of the long-running Paedophile issue? Try everything in the Authoritys Fraser Sampson power, including High Court, to prevent WYPA disclosure of, or answers to, questions related to the existence of the second paedophile. Lie about the other child abuse cases investigated by convicted police paedophile DC Michael Vause. Allow the police to drop serious level 4 image charges. We ask the suppressed question again: Do WYPA condone the concealment of paedophilia within police ranks? How about racism within the Force? Pretend it doesnt exist and ignore case after case where BME officers are prosecuted and the case either collapses or the officer is found not guilty. The most recent was last month when Detective Inspector Shakeel Ahmed was cleared at Leeds Crown Court in a second case of mind-numbing triviality and vindictiveness. That followed his acquittal last March on money laundering and criminal property charges. A case described in uPSD issue 2 as a masterclass in how not to run a criminal investigation. We could then look at DC Wasim Bashir, PC David Blair, PC Talib Khan, PC Kashif Ahmed and DC Murtaza Ahmed who have all suffered serious injustice at the hands of the Force Danny Major Miscarriage of justice victim and then had the Police Authority fight them tooth and nail in civil proceedings. Add to that, civilians Anwar Gillespie, Shamim Khan and Justin Allen, who also suffered very badly at the hands of West Yorkshire Police. That is a significant list by any measure. Mr Allen met Fraser Sampson and was able to prove to him that at least one officer had committed perjury and that comms evidence had been plainly tampered with. Were any officers disciplined or prosecuted? No. Did Mr Sampson persist. No? Does Mr Sampson still see case after case involving the same PSD officer, DI Peter Howarth? Yes. Is he troubled by that? Not a bit. The Michael Bunting and Danny Major miscarriages of justice are both WYPA Chief Executive cases with which Ignored police corruption Mr Sampson has been involved with. uPSD have passing contact with Mr Bunting who prefers to fight his own corner and is completing his second book, The Dark Side. In contrast, Neil Wilby works closely with the Major family and other journalists to raise awareness of Dannys case. Has Mr Sampson advanced the cause of either by one iota? No. Is he content for Hillsborough type cover-ups to be perpetuated? Yes. This is Bernadette Majors view of the Police Authority: I will not forget the first meeting with Mr Sampson. He told me: I will help you and you have got my attention now. PSD cant fob me off. That was not a view shared by DI Damian Carr and the now convicted paedophile DC Michael Vause. When Mrs Major relayed that message to them they almost fell off their chairs laughing. She continued: I have been blessed now with meeting other people that have also had meetings with Mr Sampson and, although unconnected, all went along the same route. A fishing expedition is the phrase that comes up over and over again. Bernadette concluded: Mr Sampson does nothing at all to help anyone except himself and I am annoyed that he had the cheek to lie to me, whilst
PSD cant fob me off
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unProfessional Standards Departmentpretending to be a friendly face. Neil Wilby met Sampson just the once, in September 2011. He is a hale fellow and very plausible, but he breached not only my trust and confidence, he subsequently lied about the content and substance of the meeting. He has steadfastly refused every legal entreaty to produce his copious handwritten notes that would prove my assertions. Fraser Sampson is, in my informed view, a dangerous and very deceptive man. As recently as last week, Sampson met a retired senior police officer from another force and, according to a very well-placed source, admitted that two senior PSD officers had attempted to pervert the course of justice. Other PSD officers have doggedly refused to investigate the well-evidenced allegations into their former colleagues and the IPCC wrongly allowed a dispensation of criminal allegations. Past history shows that Sampsons key role now will be the collusion with the police and the IPCC in how to avoid a criminal investigation into those two officers, at all costs, and suppress further damage to their already tarnished reputations. The local difficulty now facing WYPA is their suspicion that the entire meeting with the canny old detective was recorded. The case histories recounted here form less than half the cases on uPSDs books but the Police Authority are well aware of the scope and extent of what we have access to. Do they want to investigate further? No. Are they afraid of the truth? Yes, most definitely. Mr Burns-Williamson and Mr Sampson were invited to give an admission of their knowledge of widespread corruption in Professional Standards and a brief summary of their reasons for concealing it from the public for the past four years. They declined to comment. So we repeat the question from our opening paragraph? Are the two top men in WYPA fit to hold public office anywhere else? uPSD readers must answer that for themselves.
West Yorkshire Police
Wall of silence surrounds Operation Douglas reviewA Supreme Court ruling in July 2011 revealed the shocking and appalling misconduct of West Yorkshire Police as they conspired to pervert the course of justice at the trial of Paul Maxwell and Daniel Mansell. At the time, Patrick OConnor QC said: One of the most striking aspects of the saga is the extent to which so many police officers, and these senior officers, seemed to have behaved with apparent impunity. They seemed to act as if they had no fear that one of their colleagues was going to inform on them and bring their conduct to a halt. They trusted each other implicitly, didnt they?
The officer leading the Operation Douglas inquiry into the corruption was DCS Peter McKay, at the time Head of CID at neighbouring North Yorkshire Police. He said some of the officers were not very concerned with procedures. He added: With regards to senior officers, it is clear that there could be more professional auditing, tasking and checking but there wasnt. That culture seemed to permeate throughout Asked why criminal prosecutions or disciplinary proceedings were not brought against some officers, Mr McKay said: Neil Wilby I completed files for the CPS and met Fraser Sampson in I am somewhat surprised none September 2011 of the police officers were prosecuted. He concluded: We were persona non grata - officers coming in from a foreign force. People were not making themselves available. We were also having problems with the hierarchy of West Yorkshire Police. A leading member of the hierarchy at the time of the supergrass criminality was none other than Norman Bettison, then an Assistant Chief Constable. That Patrick OConnor QC hierarchy signed off Leading Barrister significant sums of money that were, in effect, to fund criminal enterprise. He also returned as Chief Constable in 2007, whilst Operation Douglas was ongoing, having been brought out of retirement to do so. A rising star in West Yorkshire CID at the time of the criminal activities of the police and present in the Force throughout the Douglas inquiry was the now Deputy Neil Wilby Chief Constable, John Parkinson. That and the Bettison factor may well offer an explanation, in full or part, as to why DCS Peter McKays inquiry was thwarted at every turn and no prosecutions of police officers ever resulted. In September 2011 the Police Authority Chairman announced that the matters raised by the Supreme Court, most notably the remarks of Lord Justice Brown This was prosecutorial misconduct of the gravest kind, had been referred to the IPCC. A WYPA Scrutiny Committee was then formed in the wake of regional and national press claims that the Force had kept the Authority in the dark. It concluded that despite there being virtually no discernible paper trail that the Force had kept them informed with verbal updates. It crucially failed to explain why Sir Norman Bettison had never even bothered to provide WYPA with a copy of the final and very Cloud of corruption hangs damning Operation Douglas report. over WYPA HQ
Fraser Samson is in my informed view a dangerous man
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unProfessional Standards DepartmentMost important of all it failed to deal at all with the point that if the WYPA Chair and his members were adequately informed why did they tolerate the attritional and obstructive treatment meted out to DCS McKays team from Chief Constable downwards? Did the Chair ever once ask DCS McKay for his views or question the rationale behind the huge bills in the end totaling over 3 million that were being signed out of the public purse? There is not a shred of evidence in the Scrutiny Committee report that he did and yet this is a man who feels he is fit to be a Police Commissioner. Despite the public and press clamour for an independent investigation, an IPCC spokesman told uPSD: We are supervising the Operation Douglas review being conducted by West Yorkshire Police. Should this highlight fresh allegations of misconduct (ones not considered by the previous investigation) the IPCC would then need to decide whether we should independently investigate that. uPSDs own police sources confirm that the review has been undertaken by the elite Homicide and Major Enquiry Team and a file submitted to the DPP several months ago. It is DCC Parkinson Rising star in corruption era not clear whether the DPP has made any decisions as a result. There are also allegedly civil proceedings arising out of the review. The IPCC, according to the same press spokesman, was not aware of the DPP involvement. He also confirmed that WYP, and not the IPCC, were responsible for managing press and public relations matters concerning the Operation Douglas review. Subsequent enquiries to the WYP press office for an update received the usual response. Nothing. Nil. Zero. So, fifteen months on from a major public outcry and a matter of gravest concern for confidence in both West Yorkshire Police, and the police service as a whole in the wake of Hillsborough, there is this wall of silence.
West Yorkshire Police
Mike Percival is a stalwart member of the police band
persistent and flagrant breaches of Court Orders
First Force Solicitor provided with war chest by the Police Authority he is suingA WYPA source has confirmed that the Forces former Director of Legal Services has served Employment Tribunal proceedings on the Authority, alleging constructive dismissal.PAGE 3 OF 4
Chief Constable Bettisons legal fees funded by taxpayer
Former ACPO ranked Ajaz Hussain, left in March of this year in an acrimonious split. He had been invited to apply for a lesser role in the Force and that post was ultimately given to his subordinate, Mike Percival, with the new title of Legal Services Manager. Mr Hussain was subsequently made redundant. It is understood that the Tribunal claims are to be vigorously defended by WYPA and that the legal costs for both sides will be borne by the taxpayer. This derives from the Authoritys much criticised decision to fund a Chief Officers insurance scheme that effectively provides a war chest to take on WYPA in disciplinary or tribunal matters. The same scheme will allow disgraced Chief Constable Bettison to hire top lawyers to defend Hillsborough misconduct allegations currently being examined by the IPCC, at the taxpayers expense. Mr Hussain joined the Force in 1996 when invited by Chief Constable, Keith Hellawell, to set up an in-house force solicitors office. From an original staff of 6, that same office had a peak staffing level of 21 and provides a civil legal service to both the Chief Constable and the Police Authority. In terms of the scope of its activities, West Yorkshires Legal Services Department claims to be the leading provider of its type in the country, after the Metropolitan Police. It is, very arguably, also one of the worst run in the country with persistent and flagrant breaches of Court Orders, Directions and CPR rules, particularly concerning compliance with disclosure requirements and filing/serving deadlines. Across a significant number of civil, tribunal and judicial review case files examined by uPSD the results are quite shocking. It is understood that Solicitors Regulatory Mr Percival faces a Complaint pending against Force Solicitor formal Solicitors Regulatory Authority complaint at the outcome of ongoing civil claims against the police. In addition to the CPR issues, allegations of the procurement and exhibiting of evidence known to be false, or criminally obtained, will form part of the submissions to the SRA. Notable recent civil court reversals for WYP Legal Services have been the hugely expensive Court of Appeal/High Court cases against retired DCI and former civilian PNLD legal officer Terence Homer; the match-day policing at Leeds Utd and the software misappropriation case against FTS. The cost to the public purse is understood to have been in excess of 2 million. Both Mr Percival, via the Force press office, and WYPAs External Relations Director, Karen Grey, declined to comment.
unProfessional Standards DepartmentWest Yorkshire Police
October 2012Volume 1, Issue 10
Another WYPA embarrassment gets the cover-up treatment
Another week, and another series of half-truths and deafening silences are the key features of uPSDs interface with West Yorkshire Police Authority: The latest farrago concerns the offe...